Homemade Weed Killer

gardener pulling weeds

Taking care of your garden or yard comes with its share of challenges, and one persistent issue that gardeners often face is the relentless invasion of weeds. If you’re looking for a DIY solution, check out our recipe for homemade weed killer.

Does Vinegar Kill Weeds?

Yes, vinegar can be effective at killing weeds. Vinegar contains acetic acid, which can act as a desiccant, causing the plant's cells to dry out and die. When applied to the leaves and stems of weeds, vinegar can damage the plant's tissues and lead to their wilting and eventual death. It can make for a great homemade weed killer when paired with salt and dish soap.

Homemade Weed Killer Recipe

Remember that while this homemade weed killer can be effective, it's non-selective and can harm any plant it comes into contact with, including desirable ones. Be cautious when applying it, and avoid using it in areas with plants you want to keep.


  • 1 gallon of white vinegar
  • 1 cup of table salt
  • 1 tablespoon of liquid dish soap


  1. Mix the white vinegar and table salt in a large container until the salt is dissolved.
  2. Add the liquid dish soap to the mixture and gently stir to combine.
  3. Transfer the mixture to a spray bottle or a garden sprayer.
  4. On a sunny day, when no rain is expected for at least 24 hours, spray the homemade weed killer directly onto the leaves and stems of the weeds you want to eliminate. Be careful to avoid spraying desirable plants, as this solution can be non-selective and harm any plant it comes into contact with.
  5. Allow the solution to sit for a few hours, preferably under the sun, to maximize its effectiveness.
  6. After a day or two, you should start to see the weeds wilting and dying.
  7. Once the weeds are completely dead, you can pull them out or cut them down.

What Kills Weeds Permanently?

While homemade weed killer is a great solution to remove any existing weeds, permanent prevention can be more difficult to accomplish. Recurring professional weed control services are the best route, but there are a few things you can do on your own to reduce the chances of weed growth in your lawn:

  • Mulching: Applying a thick layer of organic mulch, such as wood chips or straw, can smother weed growth by blocking sunlight and preventing weed seeds from germinating. Mulching also helps retain soil moisture and improve soil health.
  • Proper Planting: Planting densely and choosing plants that are well-suited to your region and soil conditions can create competition for weeds, reducing their ability to establish and thrive.
  • Soil Solarization: This method involves covering the soil with a transparent plastic sheet to trap heat and solar energy, effectively "cooking" weed seeds and pathogens in the soil. It can help reduce weed populations but is more effective in warm and sunny climates.

Trust ALM For Weed Control in Virginia

If DIY weed control isn’t working for you and you live in the Chesapeake area, call Agronomic Lawn Management! We understand the diverse range of weeds that can infiltrate lawns and have years of experience preventing weeds in Virginia lawns. Get started with us today by requesting a free estimate

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